All About the Different Types of Tea
Do you know which is the oldest and the most natural beverage on earth after water? Yes, you guessed it right. It is Tea.
Tea, an aromatic infusion, is prepared by macerating processed tea leaves in boiling water for a few minutes. It is the most coveted beverage for there is a lot more to a cup of tea than one might just think of.
Tea comes with a box full of health benefits and therapeutic properties, and thus it has been venerated since ages. Now that you have likely been sipping tea for years, you ought to know the different types of tea and where they come from.
All “True” teas are derived from an evergreen shrub known as Camellia sinensis (a traditional tea plant). True tea is completely different from what we know as herbal tea (for instance, Chamomile flowers and peppermint leaves) that comes from a different plant.
Ésah’s true teas come with their own individual appearances, aromas and essences. And to keep these elements intact, and to provide our tea connoisseurs across the globe the ideal cup of tea, Ésah sees to it that these tea leaves are oxidized accordingly (because every leaf is different from one another). And this magic happens merely when tea leaves are oxidized.
Oxidation is a natural process wherein the color and taste of the leaves undergo alteration. Oxidation is initiated by meticulously rolling the fresh tea leaves allowing a crack at the surface of the leaf so that the plant's enzymes react with oxygen. Ésah makes sure to expose the tea leaves to oxygen conscientiously, bringing out the perfect aromas and flavors so that our tea aficionados enjoy an ambrosial sip.
Teas when oxidized heavily yield a dark, rich, reddish-brown infusion. Whereas on the other hand, less oxidized teas yield light, yellow-green liquor making the tea lighter both in aroma and flavor.
Thus, to make sense of all these variations, "True teas" are divided into the following major categories: Black Tea, Green Tea, Oolong Tea, White Tea and Chai. These teas are categorized by determining how vigorous the oxidation process is.
Black tea is the most widely known tea variety in the West. But it is no more confined to the west; it has earned recognition globally. But have you ever wondered why black tea is black in color? Because black tea is fully oxidized, the leaf's properties are altered, thus resulting in dark, rich colors and brisk, robust flavors, retaining its flavors for several years.
To yield the best quality black tea, Ésah’s diligent artisans meticulously withers the freshly-picked leaves by blowing air on them. The withering process is done until they are supple enough to be rolled, exuding juices and enzymes to react with oxygen. The bruised sticky leaves, the juices of which are now exposed to air, are spread out to react with oxygen thus allowing them to turn brown gradually. The oxidation process is done under controlled temperature and humidity and the enzyme active in the process is called Polyphenol oxidase. Once the leaves are oxidised, our workers dry the leaves to seal the oxidation process.
Black teas are known to be rich in theaflavins and thearubigens (potent antioxidants) which helps in reducing the level of cholesterol and in boosting your heart health at the same time.It also ameliorates blood circulation, reduces the risk of high blood pressure and asthma.
Green tea comes from Camellia sinensis leaves. Green tea originated in China, but green tea is now known to have become a staple in almost every household in many other Asian countries. And to provide the best cup of tea to our tea connoisseurs across the globe (keeping intact the aroma, purity and nutrition) Ésah brings to you the best of green tea. Ésah helps our tea aficionados achieve a healthy sip combined with a robust yet mild delicious taste. Green tea undergoes minimal or zero oxidation during processing, keeping intact its natural appearance and vibrant color and flavor as well as the plant's healthy properties. It is lighter in color and milder in flavor.
Ésah’s workers withers the leaves until the leaves become supple and immediately after that, the leaves are steamed to make the active leaf enzymes come to a halt; else it would continue to react with oxygen. Green tea is rich in EGCG (Epigallocatechin gallate) and contains the most antioxidants and beneficial polyphenols which helps combat various kinds of deadly diseases. It also helps in weight-loss and leading a salubrious lifestyle.
Floral Green Tea
It is a special type of green tea made with tender leaves.It is steamed within one hour of plucking. The leaves are gently rolled. During the rolling process, essential oils and sap ooze out of the leaves and eventually, the drying of the leaves is done.
But since the leaves are delicately rolled, the flavor of floral green tea tends to become mild and its appearance lighter, thus giving it a pleasing effect. Also its aroma is very soft.
Oolong tea is a type of tea which is treasured bythe tea connoisseurs. oolong teas are partially oxidized. The leaves, usually brownish in color, yields a very aromatic, smooth and untarnished brew. The outer part of the oolong leaf, during production, is allowed to oxidize, while the center is kept green. Some oolongs are more oxidized, almost like black teas, with amber-colored infusions. Whereas the other oolongs are less oxidized and are closer to green tea, with a lighter appearance, exuding a floral aroma and golden green infusions. Regular intake of oolong tea helps in reducing plaque in the arteries, lower cholesterol, and boost metabolism. It also aids weight-loss. It also reduces the level of cholesterol and blood sugar.
White tea, the healthiest of all teas, is made from baby tea leaves. It is one of the most delicate and rarest tea varieties because it is so minimally processed. White tea is made from the tender, nutrient-rich bud from the tip of the plant.
White tea is harvested when the tea plantsare immature i.e. before the buds have fully opened. How white tea got its name many tea enthusiasts wonder. Because the young buds are still covered by fine white hairs, hence the name “white” tea. White tea undergoes minimal oxidation, making the tea lighter in appearance yet keeping intact its aroma, flavor and nutrients. Our artisans handpick these buds and unfurled leaves; and then these leaves are steamed prior to dryingmeticulously, preventing the leaves to oxidize any further.
Because white tea contains the highest levels of antioxidants and Theanine, it is deemed the healthiest of all types of tea. The Antioxidants combat aging and deadly diseases, thus keeping the body fit and healthy. Theanine helps in relaxing the body both mentally and physically, calms the body oozing out all the stress and reduces anxiety. It also enhances the immune system and helps in boosting concentration.
“Chai”, the Hindi term for “tea”, has been derived from the Chinese word “cha”, meaning “tea”. Chai isusually a blending of spices macerated into a tea-like beverage. The chai recipes varyglobally. But the traditional recipe of chaiis a combination of black tea mixed with robust spices, such as cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, ginger and black peppercorns. The chai tea is generally brewed using both warm water and warm milk and is sweetened with sugar or honey.
Chai helps in fighting various kinds of diseases. It helps in reducing the levels of total cholesterol, keeps your heart healthy. It also helps reduce Nausea and improve digestion and also helps you in losing weight.
One of Ésah’s principle is “To make the lives of humankind better and healthier”. This is why our community delivers our most natural and ethical tea varietals to our tea lovers’doorsteps. As Ésah is purely organic, all these tea leaves are grown organically (completely subtracting the use of machinery), wielding the traditional methods and our zealous craftsman’s wisdom and artistry. The collective efforts put into yielding these different types of teas is what makes Ésah unique and prodigious. Albeit our process is time consuming but when it comes to perpetuating the quality of the products Ésah makes sure there is no leniency. Our team works hand-in-hand with our hardworking workers to make our teas the purest and the healthiest form of tea varietals.